Ianis Hagi: Is Gheorghe's son Romania's next big thing?
Every week the BBC Football Daily Euro Leagues podcast panel will select a promising ‘wunderkind’ to focus on. This week our subject is…
With a deadly long-range shot and a taste for the unexpected, Gheorghe Hagi lit up European football during the 1980s and 90s, starring for both Real Madrid and Barcelona and earning the superb nickname “The Maradona of the Carpathians”.
Now, a generation on, his 19-year-old son Ianis could he heading down the same route.
Sharing his father’s penchant for outrageous strikes, the Viitorul Constanta midfielder caught the eye in midweek with a superb free-kick while playing for Romania’s Under-21s.
Constanta are both managed and owned by father Gheorghe, and maybe it won’t be too long until dad cashes in on his prime asset and we see Ianis in one of Europe’s top leagues.
Meet some more wunderkinds…
Euro Leagues podcast analysis – ‘A maverick who oozes talent’
BBC Sport’s Steve Crossman: “He is a maverick player, he is an Antonio Cassano, he is a Paul Gascoigne sort of player. There are fewer and fewer of these types of players around these days.
“He had a spell at Fiorentina which didn’t work out, it was too soon for him. But my goodness that kid has talent. He is so two footed he takes inswinging corners from either side, he has scored direct from a corner more than once.
“He scored a brilliant free-kick in the week. He might have to leave his dad’s team at one point, he’s one to watch in the coming years.”
Listen to BBC Radio 5 live’s Euro League Football Show podcast here.